Putting our region's cancer needs first

Peer Review Process


As a member of the Association of Medical Research Charities, we fund research in line with their guidance to ensure research is funded following the five main principles: accountability, balance, independent decision making, rotation and impartiality. This process is called the peer review process and is recognized as best practice in awarding research grants.

Our process varies depending on the funding amount being reviewed and reflects the total of our research spend for the year. Projects that are less than 5% of our total research spend undergo steps one, two, four, five and six of our peer review process. Projects including infrastructure and project grants, where the research spend is greater than 5% of the annual research spend, will complete all tiers of the peer review process, as shown below.

We support the use of animal research when there is no alternative available and all research must follow the 3 Rs – replace, reduce and refine. NWCR do not fund research involving animals under special protection (non-human primates, cats, dogs, equines, etc). For more information, please refer to the AMRC statement on the use of animals in research.

Step 1: Charity Triage Check

Applications checked against eligibility criteria upon submission


Step 2: Nominated Review

Reviewers contacted to review proposals


Step 3: Independent Review

Project Advisory Group (PAG) review proposals then recommend independent reviewers


Step 4: PAG Review

PAG sign and return the Conflict of Interest (COI) policy, then committee vote on the scientific merit of proposals and make recommendations for funding


Step 5: Board of Trustees Review & Funding Approval

Recommended projects are reviewed and put forward to the Board of Trustees for funding


Step 6: Award Letters Sent

Letters sent for successful and unsuccessful